Women in Rotary A Winning Proposition Where It All Began • • • • • • Rotary Founded in 1905 as a men-only club Rotary officially open to women in 1989 Over 215,000 women in Rotary by 2012 Equates to 17.7% of Rotary membership 16.9% of districts have women governors Phenomenal growth, and yet….. There’s Work To Do • For every female Rotarian, there are five male Rotarians! Why? • Perception still exists in some parts of the world that women are not welcome in Rotary. Based on past history Cultural bias against women • Lack of informal networking opportunities to learn about opportunities for women in Rotary There’s Work To Do • Women associated with the home sphere-Misconception by men and women that women are less capable, competitive, and task-oriented than men. Difficulty in balancing family responsibilities, careers, and Rotary • Misconceptions strengthened by lack of women leaders in Rotary as role models Why Women Are Important to Rotary • Increased gender diversity leads to: Greater productivity and improved performance. Supported by private sector research Increased attraction of, and retention of, volunteers. Women are one-half the world’s population. Consider demographics in your community. How to Attract Women • Build a product they will want to buy! • Increase number of women in senior Rotary positions. • Conduct recruitment campaigns targeted toward women. What Makes Them Want to Join? • Tailor the Rotary message for your audience. • Messaging should break down preconceptions. • Messaging should appeal to features of Rotary of interest to women. • Develop a repertoire of club projects that appeals to and attracts all demographics. Where To Find Them • Utilize women to recruit women-Colleagues Community organizations Social groups • Rotary programs—RYLA, Youth Exchange, GSE, Ambassadorial Scholars and Peace Scholars They’ve Joined…Now What? • Take a personal interest in them. • Encourage women to pursue positions of leadership in your club. • Help them to discover their strengths through volunteerism. The Bottom Line • Women in Rotary receive the satisfaction of knowing they are involved in something greater than themselves. • Rotary benefits from fresh ideas and perspectives. • Members and clubs grow together. A Win-Win for Everyone!!